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Sunday Spending: Bare Cupboards.
Big Plans.

Friday found us in an abysmal state. Refrigerator-wise. Pantry-wise. Maybe ‘wise’ isn’t the right choice of words. Poor is more accurate.

No eggs. No peanut butter. No Milk. No fruit. Sustenance boiled down to yogurt, granola, cheese, a loaf of sour dough bread, an assortment of veggies and a single can of tuna. Hardly hardship. Just key staples, missing in action. Making this a week of bare cupboards and a weekend of multiple shopping trips.


Not glamour shots of groceries.

Today we got a tower of berries. I’ve a line of some spectacular freebies for jam makin’s, leaving this batch to live in the freezer until wintertime enjoyment. I call that Big Plans.

Bigger still involves being out of town all next weekend, plus Friday and Monday. I’m planning for road trips, snacks, dog sitters, and (more!) time off (although less restful than my last round) and skipping meal plans. Or at least abbreviating them.

Bare cupboards can remain bare a little longer due to big plans. Here’s how we did (including all the trips).

Local Market: $92 over the course of 3 trips, one of them exclusively for beer. Ahem. We did get much needed PB, emergency eggs, cheese, bananas, tortillas, peppers, coffee and chips.

Farmer’s Market: $102. ‘Eghads!’ is what I would say if I didn’t acknowledge that $75 was for previously mentioned tower of berries. Local berries that must be bought NOW or forgone for their inferior companions for the rest of the year. Summertime berries are not optional. We also got good size pork steaks and more eggs.

Weekly Total: $194, putting us at $633 for July. I’m a little meh about that number. All told, for a month of big plans, a month of birthday parties, staying home and not keeping things under close scrutiny, it ain’t bad. Consider that, other than snack shopping, this will be the last trip of July and it’s downright respectable.

How’d you do? I’m considering making Sunday Spending a round up feature, where all of you can post your weekly or monthly totals. Totals, I am sure are far superior to mine. Will it keep us all honest? Are you interested?

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I AM interested – I love to read your blog posts, but right now life sucks. Hot temps, and no rain. will I have to make it through the winter without an adequate supply of my wonderful spicy hot dill pickles? I am sooo burned out on this weather. My horse, when I saw him today, seemed to be saying please don’t lets ride today. Bleh.


A year without pickles would be a very sad thing indeed. I’ll think cooler thoughts for you, and so many others. Grocery Round-up participation would be completely voluntary and only when it makes sense for your life.


That’s a great idea – I’m a member of a grocery challenge on a money saving forum and posting every time we buy food really helps keep me focused on getting the numbers down a little bit! I’ve become obsessed with avoiding waste as I’m determined to reduce spending a bit without lowering the quality of my food :-)

My OH and I usually spend £300 or more on food, toiletries, cleaning/household items and cat food/litter a month (roughly $470). I started the grocery challenge in June and spent less than £275, and in July my target is £250 which I think I’ll manage. I do only get free range/organic type meat (only eat it twice a week myself, OH gets a couple of extra portions a week as well), but I’m in awe of your big box avoidance strategy as I must confess to getting pretty much all of my food from supermarkets. Really want to go back to shopping at the local fruit & veg shops like I did when I was a student – I’ll need to see how it squares up with the budget!


Wow! That’s inspirational! Maybe you can share a little of your budget reducing juju here. And it includes cat food. Nice!

Miser Mom

I’m in if you are (although I’ll always reply late — sabbath and all that)! But actually, what I’m really hoping is you’ll share your recipe for pickles. You keep hinting that they’re a hit, but all my pickles so far have been . . . um . . . . the opposite of “hit”. I’m getting depressed.


Wait, weren’t you violating the internet sabbath with this comment? 😉

I’m scheduling my pickling days for this year. Yes, I have to schedule pickle days. Very. very sad. I’ll make sure to share the recipe love.


I live in the uk as well so hi jess. My spend is about £350 a month for me ,OH and 2 student kids at Uni.also dog and cat. That also includes toiletries etc as well, same as you.
My one big saving at this time of year is that when we first moved to our present house , we planted dwarf rooting stock cherry apple and pear trees.
Although the cherry tree hadn’t read the label tied to it and is far too large!
We also have a thornless blackberry scrambling all over the garage ,(£1 from Woolworths!) blackcurrants- free cuttings and now rasberries- yum
Also 2 blueberry bushes.
And honestly our garden isnt large about 20ftwide by 60ft long at the back and 15ftdeep by 50 ft wide at the front , we live in the corner house so front is wider than the back Most of the front is taken up by parking for 2 cars. I know not very green but second car is son’s needed to get to Uni.and work.
I don’t know what the US weather is like but perhaps investing in a few fruit bushes or even friut trees might pay dividends
Just a thought!


Another inspiration from across the pond. :) I love it!

I do have one columnar apple tree, just planted earlier this year, which will hopefully bare fruit in times to come (knock on all things). Plan to add more next year. Its great to hear that the tree investment does pay off eventually.

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